‘In God We Trust’ Returns to Elementary School Sign Because It’s ‘Part of the Artist’s Trademark’ December 12, 2013

‘In God We Trust’ Returns to Elementary School Sign Because It’s ‘Part of the Artist’s Trademark’

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about the new sign in front of Pine River Elementary School in Leroy, Michigan:

It was created by LeRoy High School Class of 1943 graduate Carl Gustafson and initially included the phrase “In God We Trust” on the spine of the book. However, Superintendent Jim Ganger and the board of education decided to remove it after hearing concern from some community members.

Earlier this week, the school board decided the concerns were unwarranted so they voted unanimously to bring God back onto the sign:

The school’s superintendent Jim Ganger said the phrase is part of the artist’s trademark, and added he has used it in many pieces.

“He didn’t do it to promote or inhibit religion in any way,” explained Ganger. “It’s just part of his work. It was totally innocent.”

“The board voted and we’re going to live with that. As a district we’re going to move forward,” said Ganger.

That’s a new excuse: “It’s just part of his trademark! It’s totally innocent!”… something the artist would never get away with if his trademark happened to be a pentagram or the words “In Allah We Trust.”

It’s worth noting that the school board consulted its attorney about this — and he told them they shouldn’t be doing this. Then they went ahead and ignored him. They ignored the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s warning letter, too.

So a school district that shut down two elementary schools over the summer has made a decision that could result in making things even worse for the community. Instead of banding together and doing what’s best for the children, the school board decided God mattered more. It’s irresponsible and unnecessary, and the students are the ones caught in the middle of this.

(Thanks to Brian for the link)


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  • I dunno. Some of them are pretty wild stuff.

    Personal favorite is the Isle of Man: Quocunque Ieceris Stabit (Wherever you throw it, it will stand.) Without knowing what “it” is supposed to be, the motto just seems more useful than the others, like vague but always-applicable advice.